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March 19

First Springtime Blouse

I’m happy to report that I’ve completed my blouse after that horrible day 2 weeks ago, with collar and all.

This is my first go at the New Look 6808 pattern.  I had made a muslin, but didn’t make a second muslin to check my corrections.  So this blouse is kinda my very-wearable muslin.

I bought this fabric late last summer, which is some sort of cotton blend.  It’s quite shifty and loves to shred the moment it’s cut.  Honestly, I think it’s most likely a low quality fabric, but it was too pretty to resist.  I’m not sure how long the blouse will last, I tried to take extra precautions to prevent unraveling (french seams wherever possible along with serging) and with all of this, I think I’ll still be washing it by hand.

Taking advantage of the most unseasonably warm weather today, I threw this outfit on right before my husband and I were walking down to get some coffee, as an afternoon refresher.  (I had a refreshing iced soy latte.)

I’m talking really, really warm!  I believe it got up to 80 degrees today!  In March!  People, I don’t think we’ve ever had such nice weather so soon.  Like ever!  Sadly, I doubt it will last much longer, but I’m glad I was able to bribe Felix to take a few photos.

When Felix asked where I wanted to go take some photos, I pointed across the street to this great big yellow bush/tree/thing.  The grass is turning green, but there’s still a lack of color on the trees and all I could see was this giant yellow bush which seemed like a wonderful flash of color to stand next to.

Detail shot of the infamous tricky collar:

I stayed pretty true to the pattern and didn’t alter things too much.  I ended up shortening the armscye a great deal by ‘cheating’.  When I say I cheated, it’s because I stitched the shoulders at least 1″ and 5/8’s lower and recut the neckline, instead of shortening the bodice at the upper chest or by raising up the armscye (and then refitting the shoulders/upper chest area).  And instead of readjusting the sleeve, I used the same sleeve pattern and made lots of soft gathers at the top of the sleeve cap instead of having a very flat & smoother cap.  (I think I like my new sleeves much better than the original.)

Okay, enough about blouses…. let’s talk birds.

This is me and my new pal, Birdie:

Felix and I had such a fun trip to get coffee.  First we saw two guys right outside our apartment walking on a slackline.  Felix tried it out, but since I was wearing a skirt I had to decline.  Then, as we were walking towards the yellow bush/tree/thing we happened upon a woman (Ellen) working on a crossword puzzle and she had her pet bird outside, chillaxing together.  I couldn’t stop without saying something and she let me pet and hold Miss Birdie.

I’m not sure what it is about birds, but I think they’re such characters and can be a lot of fun.

Birdie, just watching me watch her play with a twig.

After taking some blouse photos, I found a rope hanging from a tree, steps away from the giant yellow bush.  It was just hanging there, begging for me to give it a whirl:

I walked away from this guy with a rope burn on my knees, but it was fun and worth it!  (And yes, I think my legs are as pasty-white as my skirt.  heh)

So much happened in a quick walk to get some coffee, all within 20 minutes and within 2 blocks from my home.  This is why I absolutely love living in the city.  You never know what fun, unexpected thing will happen next.

  1. gail / Mar 19 2012

    Super cute! I can see why you fell for that fabric! And I think it was worth all your troubles!

    p.s. that yellow tree/bush/thing is a forsythia :-) I for one am hoping this hot weather is just about over, since my AC is dead! But it sure is nice to see the flowers starting to come out in March!

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Thanks so much for pointing out what that magical yellow shrub I was standing behind. :) I also don’t have AC yet; I’m glad it’s still getting chilly in the evenings so I get a chance to cool off. I hope we don’t end up having a too-hot summer.

  2. Dana Tougas / Mar 19 2012

    The blouse looks lovely. I like your gathered cap sleeves. They look great!

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Thanks Dana! I think the sleeves are my second-favorite feature (besides the collar/bow combo).

  3. Qui / Mar 19 2012

    the blouse turned out wonderfully! it looks awesome with that skirt too :)

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Thanks so much!

  4. Rachel / Mar 19 2012

    Yahy- it looks great :) I agree with Gail- your obliging yellow bush is a Forsythia :)
    And how cute is Birdie? I love her! One of the great thrills of my life was when I got to hold a barn owl!

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Isn’t she the cutest bird?! You got to hold a barn owl?!!!! I’m so jealous. Most people have a list of places they want to go in their lives (which I do have a mini list), but my list of life-to-do’s petting various types of animals. heh A barn-owl may have to go on that list. :)

      • Rachel / Mar 19 2012

        Yes, the barn owl was just out there for display- and they let me hold her :) I was thrilled ;)
        I often hang around animals just to pet them lol
        We once got to meet a lovely falcon at a re-enacting event too. I believe it was a peregrine falcon- although I never got to touch it, I reaaaaaaaaaaaallly wanted to ;)

  5. Jennifer / Mar 19 2012

    The blouse came out so pretty! Wonderful job. Birdie is quite cute too!

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Thanks Jenny! I think Birdie should have posed in the rest of my photos. heh

  6. Amanda D. / Mar 19 2012

    Cute blouse, very weather appropriate! My family has had cockatiels for awhile and they have such personality. Seriously funny feathered friends :) Weather in New York has been crazy all winter, the warmest ever. I love it, but are we in for a really hot summer? Hmm…

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Growing up we had a bird named Charlie for a while. (We were only watching over him temporarily). I have many fond memories of playing around with the silly bird, namely bath time in the bathroom sink.

      I completly forgot you moved to New York!!! Glad to hear you’ve also gotten the early heat wave. (And yes, I’m hoping we don’t have too hot a summer also).

  7. Kerry / Mar 19 2012

    Really lovely blouse, great fabric and the collar is so cute.

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Thanks Kerry! I think the collar makes this blouse.

  8. Dee / Mar 19 2012

    Adorable blouse, and great finish to a rocky start of a project!

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      I ended up setting aside the directions completely and doing it my own way. Too bad I didn’t do that for the collar, I could have saved myself loads of trouble. heh

  9. Jo / Mar 19 2012

    This must have been so satisfying to finish after all your troubles! I shall have to take it as inspiration to finish my own project with the same pattern! :)

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      It was! Can’t wait to see your nicely fitted version. I don’t really care for zippers in my blouses, so I ended up making mine rather blousey. I’m wearing it once again today with a pair of trousers and have the waist cinched with a grosgrain ribbon.

  10. Mika / Mar 19 2012

    I love it! I saw that exact fabric in a store in the Garment District a couple of weeks ago. It’s nice to see another shirt from this pattern too – I have it and can’t wait to put something together.

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Did you really?! Isn’t it really thin fabric?

  11. Melizza / Mar 19 2012

    The blouse is so lovely. You can’t go wrong with a sweet collar *and* a bow.

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      I think I could make anything as long as it has a bow on it. :) Thanks so much for your kind comment Melizza.

  12. Meg / Mar 19 2012

    Best. Photoshoot. Ever. Except for the rope burn – that is no good. LOVE the blouse – it’s just so perfect for spring!!! I’m so glad you were able to conquer it, and I agree about the sleeves – they are just darling :)

    • Liz / Mar 19 2012

      Heh thanks Meg! That means a lot coming from you, who has the most fun photoshoots ever! :)

  13. karen / Mar 19 2012

    Super cute! You could also wear it with jeans, very versatile.

  14. Sarah / Mar 19 2012

    Love the forsythia bush! I want one in my backyard. :) The blouse turned out so brilliantly and your skirt is so pretty! Job well done, I say!

    • Liz / Mar 20 2012

      Thanks Sarah! The skirt was an anthropologie purchase 1 or 2 years ago. It’s the only white skirt in my closet and nothing else seemed to go with my blouse at the time. I have a hunch I’ll be needing to make myself some more basics (in white, grey, and black).

  15. Lauren / Mar 20 2012

    So pretty! I’m glad you were able to get the blouse to work – that fabric is goooorgeous & it really is a perfect marriage of fabric+pattern. Love the little bow on the collar :)

  16. Ginger / Mar 22 2012

    Too cute! I love the little bow!

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